It’s important to know what to expect when kids start losing teeth. Children’s Dental Center is here to help you understand every stage of your child’s tooth development.
When to expect baby teeth
Your child’s baby teeth – or primary teeth – usually start to appear between 6 and 12 months. Some baby teeth erupt as soon as three months. It all depends on the individual. Parents shouldn’t be concerned if teeth appear a little early or a little late.
Children usually have developed all 20 teeth by around the age of 3. After the first tooth appears, it’s a great time to establish healthy brushing and eating habits and teach children the importance of teeth. As a result, your child will have an increased chance of having better dental health for life.
Losing teeth and making room for permanent teeth
Primary teeth or baby teeth begin to loosen and fall out around age 6. The first baby teeth to fall out are usually the two bottom front teeth. The typical order of losing teeth is bottom front first, followed by lateral incisors, canines, first and second molars. Simply put, teeth usually fall out the order they came in. This tooth loss can take place leading all the way up to age 12 or 13.
Permanent or adult teeth push out baby teeth. In most cases, this is a simple, natural process. Sometimes if your child has lost a tooth because of decay or an accident, the permanent tooth may drift and come in crooked. If you have any concerns, you should always contact your child’s dentist.
When a child’s first tooth becomes loose or falls out, they may be initially confused. Parents should assure children that losing teeth is part of growing up. Losing them around age 6 or 7 is natural. Permanent teeth are replacing the baby teeth and the old baby teeth must make room for them. If your child has a loose tooth, they can be encouraged to wiggle it. But do not pull at the tooth. As a result, this can break the roots and cause greater chance of infection.
What to do after your child loses teeth
After loosing a tooth, your child’s gums may bleed some. A child who has lost a tooth should swish their mouth with warm water or bite a wet cloth. Any bleeding should stop within an hour. There will be some discomfort, but after losing the first couple, kids get used to it. Saving a tooth for the tooth fairy is a fun way many parents help kids understand and deal with tooth loss.
No matter the age, no matter the number of teeth, shape, size or placement, early dental care and good dental habits are essential to a child’s oral health. Parents can help with the following:
- Have your child brush his or her teeth at least twice a day.
- In the beginning, it’s good to supervise and offer help.
- Help your child floss daily.
- Eat a healthy diet and limit sugary snacks.
- Schedule regular dental visits for your child.
If you have any concerns or questions, or just want to learn more about how Children’s Dental Center can help you and your child, schedule an appointment today.